File image: IOL
File image: IOL

WATCH: Rand trades firmly on the back foot

By Dhivana Rajgopaul Time of article published Apr 22, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG - The South African currency endured massive swings yesterday, ending the European session on the back foot amid weak risk appetite and cautious trade ahead of the president’s address to the nation last night according to NKC Research. 

The government has been accused of dragging its feet on the economic support front. We expect the rand to test new lows before end-April. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.45 percent weaker at R18.96/$, after trading in range of R18.78/$ - R19.11/$. The rand weakened somewhat following the president’s address last night. Expected range today R18.90/$ - R19.40/$.

South African bourse

The rout in oil markets caused the JSE All Share (-2.5 percent), along with major equity markets, to trade negative. Locally, large resources (-4.50 percent) and financial (-1.58 percent) stocks were among the day’s biggest laggards. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index traded 2.35 percent lower.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price nosedived yesterday, dipping below $20pb, as traders ran scared after May WTI futures fell below zero for the first time ever – June contracts have also fallen in value due to concerns that the same may happen at the point of expiry. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 17.71 percent lower at $19.79pb. Crude prices extended losses during Asian trade this morning.

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